Ibec calls for wider tax base

Employers want the Government to introduce changes to broaden the tax base, encourage investment and to build the economy over the next five years.

Ibec will today outline its demands to TDs about what the next government should do to keep the economy and businesses growing.

The group also wants the next government to rationalise welfare payments, introduce a tax credit for returning emigrants and a multi-million euro town growth fund to boost rural growth.

Tax cuts, increased local charges and a state-backed savings scheme for first-time home buyers are among some of its proposals too.

The business representative body also wants the top rate of income tax reduced by 1% to 40% over the lifetime of the next government and for no worker to pay more than half their marginal income to the state.

Ibec wants revenue for the State to move away from taxes and be focused more on property or user charges and higher rates of USC to be reduced for high earners.

Also on its wishlist are seeing tax supports for small business enhanced, capital gains reduced to 20% for entrepreneurs and Ireland’s corporate tax to remain competitive with other jurisdictions, such as Britain.

The group will launch its five-year proposals today and wants the next government to make changes.

It also wants to “rationalise” or simplify the social welfare system, by joining all payments into one single group, where recipients would be means-tested and assessed on their ability to work.

It also wants a special temporary grant given to emigrants returning home.

Despite the outgoing government promising this week to spend €27bn over the next five years, Ibec say this is not enough. It wants €10bn or 4% of GDP annually spent on infrastructure by 2020.

The group emphasises that the motorway network in Ireland needs completion and that Dublin needs to be connected to the North-West, while more roads are also needed along the Atlantic corridor.

It wants a second runway for Dublin Airport.

It also suggests that major projects, including hospitals, cannot be delayed because of planning. Furthermore, the group suggests that a single set of apartment design specifications should be agreed by all local authorities.

Ibec suggests that cities should have a locally elected mayor.

This would help regional growth and ensure they have executive power over planning, transport, and housing. A €25m annual town growth grant should also be introduced to help revitalise centres there, it says.


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